Anne Hathaway monster movie sued by Godzilla owners
- Alex Johnston
- 20 May 2015
Legal trouble for film described as 'Godzilla meets Being John Malkovich'
Voltage Pictures, makers of serious Oscar-awarded films such as The Hurt Locker and Dallas Buyers Club, have run into a spot of trouble with an upcoming project. Colossal, currently seeking funding, is about Gloria, an 'ordinary woman' played in the fashion of Hollywood ordinary women by Anne Hathaway, who after losing her job and her fiancé decides to leave New York and go back home. But then, when news reports start coming in of a giant lizard attacking Tokyo, Gloria finds that her consciousness is somehow connected to said giant lizard. But how? And what's she to do about it?
So far, so good. Hathaway's journey away from her roots in teen fare such as The Princess Diaries and Ella Enchanted has been long and interesting. She's dabbled with romantic comedy but is clearly happier playing darker characters in films like Alice in Wonderland, The Dark Knight Rises and Les Miserables, the latter earning her basically every award ever for her role as Fantine. She recently got high praise for her performance as an increasingly traumatised drone pilot in George Brant's one-woman Off-Broadway show Grounded, directed by Julie Taymor. We, for one, would pay cash to see Anne Hathaway channelling a giant lizard attacking Tokyo.
However, Colossal director Nacho Vigalondo (Open Windows, Timecrimes) has made what hindsight demonstrates as a serious mistake in describing the movie as 'the cheapest Godzilla movie ever', and Voltage Pictures has used images of the lizard from the 2014 movie to drum up interest in the project. This has attracted the attention of Toho Co Ltd, which own the rights to Godzilla, and which has filed a complaint that accuses Voltage of multiple counts of copyright infringement and demands that the production be shut down.
Based on Vigalondo's uneven track record, it would be wise to reserve a little scepticism about his claim that 'I found a way that is honest and logical to make Godzilla in a costume'. But while Toho clearly has the right to be aggrieved at the unlicensed appropriation of its most famous figurehead, they already have a lot of cash, and it would be a shame if the world never got to see Anne Hathaway mind-melding with a giant lizard.
Colossal is currently not coming to a cinema near you. In the meantime, let's enjoy that incredible HALO jump from Gozilla once more …